The Saga of Miles Forrest

Langston stood next to me and Rev. Chapman as we waited for our horses to be unloaded.  He leaned toward me, I think hoping the parson wouldn’t hear and asked, “Where’s a good place to get a drink?”
    “Blair Street is a couple streets up, and you can find all the rotgut you want,” I replied a little loudly, more for the parson’s benefit.  “Last I heard there were forty saloons in Silverton.  You could drink all day and more if you wanted to visit them all.”
    “Mister Langston, you surely won’t be doing your mind and body any good by visiting those dens of iniquity, and they will work worse havoc on your soul,” piped in the Reverend.
    Langston gave a little cough, then said, “Reckon you’re right, Preacher, but I ain’t got my soul saved yet, and the four hours on that train gave me a powerful thirst.”
    I grabbed the reins of Hawk while Langston mounted.  He gave a little wave and rode off.  I wanted to mount but thought I ought to walk along with the parson.  The Wells Fargo office was only a little over a block away and I like to stop in to say hello to the guys who worked there.  
    Only Dick Fletcher and the new man Gilcrist were in the office.  After introducing them to Rev. Chapman, Dick informed me that Morgan Appleby was visiting in Denver and might start working somewhere along the Front Range.  He wiped hair from the front of his face tucking it under the visor, then said, “Miles, you know this office needs at least three men.”
    There was no need for a reply, for he was right, so I just nodded my head.  “Say, I’m looking for three men and was wonderin’ if you guys might be able to help me out.  First, there is a man wanted, Upton Shaw…”
    “What’s he wanted for?” interrupted Gilcrist.
    “Does it matter?” I answered curtly.  “But if you insist on knowing he shot the deputy marshal in Durango and a fellow by the name of Conrad Keim.”  I didn’t go into any detail nor tell him that I expressly told Shaw to desist in his search.
    “Go ahead,” said Dick.
    “The word is that Shaw stopped to see a doctor in Silverton.  I’m also interested in finding a man with the handle of Frank Black.”
    “That would be Dr. Webb,” blurted Gilcrist.  I looked at Dick who sort of rolled his eyes.  Giving a slight grin I was beginning to understand why they needed three men to work here.
    Gilcrist continued, “The doctor has a place down a few blocks on Empire Street.  Want me to go fetch him?”
    Dick was looking at me and shaking his head.  I took the hint, “No, I want to see him in his office.  Dick, what about Black?”
    I could tell he was thinking, then, of course Gilcrist blurted out again, “There’s a Black that has a run-down saloon up on Greene and 18th Street.”
    As we stepped back out on the sidewalk, Rev. Blair asked, “Are there any churches in Silverton?”
    I pulled on my moustache to think on what he said.  “Parson, there are two churches to my knowledge; a Congregational and a Catholic.”
    “My, my,” he muttered, “Two churches and forty saloons.  Seems like there’s work to be done here in the devil’s playground.”
    “Parson, I’m goin’ to visit the doc, then go see this Frank Black.”
    “Go on, Brother, where shall I meet you?” he inquired.
    “Call me, Miles.  I’ll plan on meeting you at the Grand Hotel, say around four o’clock.”  With that I mounted Hawk, the called out to him.  “You be careful, Parson.”
    Within a few minutes I was outside the doctor’s office noticing a sign, “Wilbur Webb, M.D.” and next to his office which I reckoned was his residence was a building that carried a sign indicating hospital.  Looking at the layout I was thinking that in a place such as Silverton he probably had quite the business.
    Normally I don’t tie Hawk, but decided to this time, then walked in the office.  “Be right with you!” called a voice from a back room.
    In a few seconds a squat, wobbly man with white shirt with stains on it, and pants held up by suspenders walked out.  I noticed that he seemed to stagger a little until he placed his hand on the edge of a bookshelf.  
    “What can I do for you?  You don’t look sick, and you’re standing, so what is it that ills you?”
    “I’m Deputy U.S. Marshal Miles Forrest, and I’m lookin’ for a man you may have treated for a bullet wound in the leg,” I informed him.
    “Bullet wound!  Do you know how many bullet wounds I treat in a week?  Bah, get out and leave me alone.”  He turned to go back to room when he stumbled and fell.
    Rushing to him, I lifted him up and sort of half carried, half drug him to a chair.  He wasn’t hurt, but I quickly could tell his problem from the smell.  He was drunk.
    “You sit there!” I ordered, then went to the stove.  I put in a few pieces of wood to heat it up, then began to look for a coffeepot.  “Where’s your coffeepot?”
    He looked at me, sort of with a half-glazed, half angry stare.  “Back room…but I don’t want any coffee!”
    Ignoring him I went to look…